Category Archives: January

Happy Founders Day to My Sorors of Delta Sigma Theta

A Bouquet in Red and White, 24 x 24 inch red and white quilt, by O.V. Brantley, 2010.

What makes every artist different are their life experiences that influence their work. Most art bubbles up from the soul. One of the things in my life that has left an indelible mark on my soul and influenced my quilt choices is my sorority Delta Sigma Theta.

Circles of Sisterhood, 30 x 36 inch embellished red and white quilt by O.V. Brantley, 2016.

Once you become a Delta, you love all things red and white. So while some quilters have made red and white quilts throughout history because they are beautiful, I have an added reason. Red and white are the colors of my sorority.

A Legacy to Love, 66×82 inch red and white quilt by O.V. Brantley, 2015.

I am working on a book of red and white quilts which I hope to finish this year. (Wish me luck!) I hope the book will be a lasting legacy to my Delta Sigma Theta legacy daughter India who is also a member of Delta Sigma Theta.

Star of Mu, 60×60 inch quilt by O.V. Brantley, 2016. Commemorates India Brantley’s initiation into Delta SIgma Theta sorority,

Meanwhile, thank you Delta Sigma Theta for the added inspiration to my dreams, and Happy 105th Founders Day to my sorors!

Flight Dreams, 59×70 inch red and white appliqué quilt by O.V. Brantley, 2012.

#dst #dstfoundersday #ovsjoyousjanuary #redandwhitequilts

Grateful For Another Happy Day #5

Grateful For Another Happy Day #5, 31 x 34 inch art quilt, by O.V. Brantley, 2018. For sale at ovbrantleyquilts.com

I try to keep gratitude at the fore front of my life. I even keep a gratitude journal just to make sure I never forget to be grateful for all things big and small. It is life changing.

I often incorporate the word gratitude in my quilts, but now I have created a whole series focused on gratitude. The series is Grateful For Another Happy Day, and there are 7 quilts in this series, one for each day of the week. Each of the quilts starts with a panel of a beautiful, joyful African woman by Julia Cairns.

Closeup of panel by Julia Cairns

Grateful For Another Happy Day #5 measures 31×34 inches. The dominant colors are brown and orange in a mixture of batiks and African fabrics. It is pieced and quilted on my machine and embellished with buttons.

The fabric on the back is a red, green and gold heart print. There is a hanging sleeve for easy display and a label that documents the quilt.

Back of “Grateful For Another Happy Day #5”

I signed and dated the quilt on the front. Grateful For Another Happy Day #5 is one-of-a-kind and is offered for sale in my studio store. #ovsjoyousjanuary

Fusible Batting is a Game Changer

Fusi-boo fusible batting

Now that I make many more small quilts than big quilts, I have fallen in love with fusible batting.

505 Basting Spray

I have never been a fan of pinning, but I do use 505 basting spray from time to time.

“Grateful for Another Happy Day #7” sandwiched with fusible batting

Fusible batting is so much more convenient — no fumes, no mess — just sandwich it between your quilt top and back and iron. Voila!

How do you baste your quilts? #ovsjoyousjanuary

Organize Your Quilts

Dreaming of My Ancestral Home, 60×75 inch quilt by O. V. Brantley, 2017. For sale at ovbrantleyquilts.com

Like most people, I am spending some time getting myself organized for the new year. The product I cannot live without is Artwork Archive software.

I make a lot of quilts. I sell some. I give away some. I keep some, and I exhibit some. It can be hard to remember which quilt is where. Artwork Archive solves that problem.

This cloud based software, which makes the information available on all my devices, has a place for everything. At it simplest, I have a place to record all the information about my quilts — name, pictures, creation date, dimensions, price, and description.  But the software goes far beyond that.

Give Yourself a Flower Garden, 58×58 inch applique quilt by O.V. Brantley, 2016.

For instance, there is a place to record exhibits and most importantly to me, locations. (You never want to lose a quilt). The software reminded me that the exhibit at the Lucy Laney Museum was ending December 31, 2017, and that Dreaming of My Ancestral Home and Give Yourself a Flower Garden would be returned to me.

Another neat feature of this software is that it allows me to create and print a certificate of authenticity for each quilt. This is very important to the people who buy my quilts.  I can also record sales, and that is very important to me.

There are many other great features of the software like a public page and a scheduler, but suffice it to say for $14.00 per month, this software gives me peace of mind and keeps me organized.

Artwork Archive is one of my favorite things. I recommend it. #joyousjanuary

My Happy Place Just Got Happier

 

New kitchen in my studio

I renovated my attic in 2011 and turned it into my quilt studio. But like many of us when we take on big projects, we never quite finish. That’s what happened to me. Although my plans called for a small kitchenette, I never finished it. Now I have and I love it!

The beginning of a kitchen

The all important sink

Working from the original plans, I was able to go to IKEA and order all the necessary parts with a few substitutions. Their kitchen installers installed it the day after Christmas. All that was left for me to do was to hire a plumber to connect the water.

Then like every crafter in the universe, with new storage space, I spent days organizing my studio. It was a labor of love.

Studio Organization
Canisters of thread

Over the years I have spent many joyful hours quilting in my happy place. Now my happy place just got happier.

Wine and coffee always present

Happy Birthday to me! Happy New Year to you! #ovsjoyousjanuary